Lower sheaths shorter or longer than the internodes, glabrous. Glumes
6-7 mm, equal or the lower glumes slightly longer; central awns 13-20
mm, about twice as thick as the lateral awns, divaricate to reflexed at maturity;
lateral awns 8-13 mm, erect to ascending.
Aristida purpurascens var. virgata grows in wet or moist areas
such as seepage bogs, sandy pinelands, and wet prairies of the southeastern
Perennial 5-10 dm, tufted on a knotty base and strictly erect; nodes mostly exposed; blades flat or drying involute, 1-2 mm wide, often 2-3 dm long, tapering to a very fine point; panicle elongate, 3-4 dm, strict, with short erect branches; glumes subequal, the first commonly with a lateral vein on one side only, 5.5-9.5 mm, the second 1- veined, 6-10.5 mm; lemma 4-6 mm; central awn 1.5-2.2 cm, strongly curved-divergent from the base; lateral awns 0.8-1.5 cm, erect and scarcely protruding from the panicle. Dry sandy soil of the coastal plain; s. N.J. to Fla. and Tex.
Gleason, Henry A. & Cronquist, Arthur J. 1991. Manual of vascular plants of northeastern United States and adjacent Canada. lxxv + 910 pp.